For almost 50 years, the Rivendell Group has been meeting regularly on or near the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus to study, discuss and enjoy myth, fantasy and imaginative literature in the traditions of J.R.R. Tolkien, George MacDonald, Christina Rossetti, T.H. White, Ursula K. LeGuin, Evangeline Walton, C.S. Lewis, Peter Beagle, Patricia McKillip, Jorge Luis Borges, John Gardner, and Angela Carter (among others). Formerly, we were also the University of Minnesota Mythopoeic Society, a recognized U of MN student organization. Our constitution is on another page.


(Marianne Hageman, David Lenander, Joan Marie Verba, Cat Lenander, David Emerson, Ruth Berman)

The Rivendell Discussion Group is part of the Mythopoeic Society, a non-profit organization devoted to the study of mythopoeic literature, particularly the works of members of the informal Oxford literary circle known as the “Inklings” (including J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis).

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For more information, including directions, contact David Lenander, at david_lenander@icloud.com

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Next Rivendell Meeting

Discussion of the works of Eleanor Arnason at Mythcon (August 3-4)

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Rivendell Photos, Old and New

Photo from our September ’06 discussion with Katherine Kohman, author of Lembas for the Soul, a joint meeting with The Minnesota Tolkien Society:


(A photo from a Readings from Rivendell meeting from many years back. Terry Garey, on the right, read some poetry. She has a recent collection on cassette. To her right is Paula Rice Biever (check out her ‘zine, Remnants), and to Paula’s right is Erik Biever, proprietors, Foont Cellars Brewing & Publishing (publisher of our newsletter), and Sally Morem.)

[More Rivendellers, left to right: (Terry Garey’s arm), Eleanor Arnason, Joan Marie Verba, Sandra Unerman, Ruth Berman and Margaret Howes. Probably the “Readings From Rivendell meeting in 1990 or 1991.]

[Still more Rivendellers at the same meeting: Eric M. Heideman, Polly Peterson, Marianne Hageman, Mike Dorn, Peg Kerr Ihinger and Brian Neurauter.]

May ’95 Rivendell discussion of the “Enchanted Forest” books with the author, Patricia C. Wrede:

from left: Riawa Smith, Alexandra Howes, Steve Glennon, Margaret Howes, Patricia C. Wrede – photo by David Lenander

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More about the Rivendell Discussion Group

Elsewhere on this site are some reflections on reading Tolkien by David Lenander that were intended for the Mythlore Tolkien memorial issue, but which were never used, and which included an account of Rivendell activities from years ago. As of 7/27/97, I’ve added some more scanned photographs.

Rivendell is affiliated with The Mythopoeic Society, headquartered in California–but membership in the national society is not required, and most local members are not members. There are other similar groups located in scattered geographic locations about the U.S.A. For more information, see the Mythopoeic Society’s list of groups.

Besides our monthly discussions, we have occasionally sponsored other programs, such as readings of new, original tales by such local writers (and members) as P.C. Hodgell and Eleanor Arnason, or lectures by professors like Stephen Prickett (U of Sussex, England, author of Victorian Fantasy), or U of MN students like Mike Levy, or SF & Fantasy novelists like C.J. Cherryh, Ben Bova, Gordon Dickson and Phyllis Ann Karr. We have also participated in the Mpls. S.F. Convention (“Minicon“), held annually during Easter weekend, the Fourth Street Fantasy Convention, SF Minnesota’s Diversicon, Arcana, and acted as organizing committee for the 24th annual Conference of the Mythopoeic Society in 1993, and other activities. With some of these other organizations, and especially with our “offspring,” the local C.S. Lewis Society and Second Foundation, a group that regularly meets to discuss SF, we have often held joint meetings, worked together on publicity or cross-listed our events in newsletters, etc.

A recent local event of particular interest was the 30th anniversary commemorative Tolkien Conference, put on by some students at Mankato State University. Ruth Berman, Steve Deyo, David Lenander and Louisa Smith attended from Rivendell.

We also hosted a followup to this and to the recent “BREE MOOT” conferences in the midwest (previously, Iowa and Missouri) in May of ’97, coinciding with the revival of the Children’s Theater Company’s production of The Hobbit. See the menu on this page (“Event Archives”) for past Bree Moot conference reports.

We’re particularly proud of the creative and scholarly productions of some of our members, and especially of our annual December “Readings from Rivendell” program, where our members have read many stories and poems that were much enjoyed by all listeners–and in many cases, by later readers when these were published.

Our occasional newsletter over the years is Last Homely Hearth. I plan to add a number of past articles here. See here for the early history of the Rivendell Group. See also the Eleanor Arnason page for some reproduced material from LHH.

Here’s a list of some mythopoeic writers about whom I’ll be adding some more discussion, information, etc.

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Ongoing Information

Ongoing Information

Minn-STF web site at: www.mnstf.org/. Minicon web site at: www.mnstf.org/minicon/.

Gamesday Players: Board & card gaming almost every Friday evening. FFI: Richard Tatge at 612-827-3228.

Filk Circle: open to all who like to participate in music with f/sf lyrics. 4th Sunday at 5pm. FFI: Rich Brown, 651-646-2159, rab@freemars.org

Stipple-Apa is a healthy general-interest publication with members in six countries. Local collations are every six weeks. Chat with fellow fans the classic way. FFI: Jeanne Mealy, 651-771-7226

Our complementary sister- or daughter- group, Second Foundation, meets regularly to discuss Science Fiction.

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